steak and “qweeno”

  Pan seared sirloin steak paired with a super easy quinoa recipe. How to quinoa:

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • kale
  • cherry tomatoes, halved
  • frozen edamame
  • lime

Cook 1 cup of quinoa in rice cooker according to directions, use veggie broth instead of water for more flavor. When quinoa is done, add frozen edamame and ripped up kale. When ready to serve, toss halved cherry tomatoes and a splash of lime in the quinoa blend. Add salt and pepper to your liking.

Bistek recreated

[bistek with steamed broccolini and watermelon apple cocktails]

Ate B and I wanted Filipino comfort food the other night and thought of making bistek. Our family members have been raving about this guy who blogs about Filipino food, JunBlog, and he made bistek look extra tasty. It’s a simple and easy recipe, that you can’t go wrong. When we looked to add some greens to our meal, having mini trees in the form of broccolinis, seemed to be a perfect fit. Ate B added additional flavoring by making a sweet peanut dipping sauce for the broccolinis (recipe to come).

All of this goodness was washed down with a combo freshly juiced watermelon and apples. Not too shabby.

wheat don’t bother me no mo’

I don’t have pasta too often in my life anymore. My love for it started to fade because it didn’t love me back. Then I was inspired to make homemade rice pasta after some inspiring photos from my Kuya of his version of homemade pasta surfaced.

Rice pasta dough recipe:

  • 2 cups rice flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp salt

Easy peasy. =)

29 and counting…

It’s been a week now since I turned 29. A few weeks ago, I was dreading it because it meant being that much closer to being 30 and I was not okay with that. The day of my birth came and it was rather delightful turning a year older.

I am thankful for my wonderful family, friends and the positivity that surrounds me. Here’s how the day, week, maybe the whole month has been looking:

[L: delicious bacon flavored soda; R: painted with a party nail]

[more bacon (and eggs) in my life for breakfast]

[L: tulips from boss; R: mini carrot cake from lunch with bosses]

[L: Korean BBQ in Westwood; R: bro bro & I outside of Royce Hall pre-RadioLab show]

[Gingergrass lunch of banana leaf fish]

Combine great food, drinks, shows, concerts, company, ambiance and you have one stellar birthday. I didn’t get crazy. I literally soaked up all the goodness that I was presented with and I continue to look forward to all the positives that continue to come my way. Many many many thanks to everyone I love. =)

How to make food for one

This is the ever continuous battle I go through when making meals for myself. I think it’s because a) I don’t know how to portion well and b) what if I want more as leftovers later? I think I’ve devised a simple plan. Moderation is not my strongest characteristic, so I’ve started using that to my advantage.

Make a three serving meal, but really it will be a two serving meal because I tend to go back for seconds and then the leftover will be lunch for the next day.

Examples:

Tuesday’s dinner is Wednesday’s lunch.

[ground chix & baby bok choy over brown rice]

How to cook above dish seen here.

Wednesday’s dinner and Thursday’s lunch.

[bell peppers with gardein chick’n w/ cilantro & avo over brown rice]

I basically pan seared the bell peppers in Earth Balance, then tossed the chick’n in with some cilantro and a bit of red pepper flakes for flavor. I squeezed a bit of lime juice on top, right before turning the pan off, then plated over brown rice. Half an avo was used to add creamyness to the top along with a bit more red pepper flakes for color.

Thursday night’s dinner and Friday’s lunch.

[bell peppers, portabello mushrooms, carrots & gardein chick’n w/ “teriyaki” sauce over brown rice]

This dish was pretty much made like the above bell peppers combo except I added mushroom to it and went with the Asian theme using Tamari soy sauce and a bit of brown sugar. I don’t know how much of each I used, but essentially I did it by taste. Aren’t bell peppers so versatile?  This tasted even better the next day when the “teriyaki” flavor set in.

Simple, easy, delicious meals for one. More brainstorming eats to come. Any other way you prepare baby bok choy or bell peppers?

May Day, day one

Protests? Fighting for one’s rights? Naw, none of that for me. I have my own issues to battle and conquer. Ya I’m selfish. No bigs.

Today marks day one of my quest to be Tough Mudder ready.

I recently signed up to do this 10-12 mile run challenge riddled with 25 military style obstacles. A buddy of mine convinced me to sign up and only recently did I realize that so much preparation needs to happen on my part before undertaking such an adventure. After meeting with a friend and now personal trainer, today is start day.

To commence, I began my day with a run around the reservoir. Approximately 2.2miles in diameter, I went once around. With half a banana before, and the rest after, I averaged a 9:37min per mile.  Not  bad but definitely room for improvement.

Enter breakfast: 

[extra pulp oj in a 4oz flight glass; tofu & avo scramble]

Using a little souvenir from Stone Brewery, I was able to portion out my oj accordingly. One does not really need a 16oz glass of oj in the ams. That’s like more than 5 organges! That’s a lot of vitamin C.

For my scramble, I cut up one of the four cubes of extra firm tofu into smaller cubes and pan seared in Earth Balance soy free butter. Then I added half of my avo to heat up, while I scrambled the egg and then poured over the the mixture. I added a bit of cayenne pepper for kick, plated and then added the other half of my avo.

Lunch:

[tuna mix, extra lettuce in zip lock, tuna sandwich, caesar salad; upclose of my broken plastic fork]

Mixed only a bit of light mayo with the tuna and half a can of corn. Sandwich thins used to assist in the reduction of caloric intake. The big tupperware next to the sandwich housed romaine lettuce with a bit of caesar dressing. Nothing to write home about. But do check out my broken plastic fork. Like my good friend Elise, I reuse my plastic forks. I think they’re not so long lasting for a reason. Fortunately, I was able to find the missing piece and toss it in the garbage before possibly consuming it accidentally. Elise knows what I’m talking about.

Insert some leg gym time and maybe a tortilla soup from Whole Foods, then dinner time.

[ground chix with baby bok choy; bits of ginger & red pepper flakes]

For the past few days, all I wanted was some sort of garlic/ginger/baby bok choy concoction. While at Whole Foods, I decided to make that dream come true, so I bought ground chicken. At home, I sautéed chopped garlic with some sliced ginger root in Earth Balance, then added in the ground chicken. Once the chicken was almost cooked, I squeezed half a lime on top, then tossed the baby bok choy in.

Since I am now making a concerted effort to eat more brown rice, I got some long and short grain combo from the bulk bins at WF. Plated the chicken and bok choy combo over the rice and sprinkled some red pepper flakes for an extra kick. This makes it good. Promise.

And so, as the days of our lives turn, I think it was a pretty successful day one, don’t you think? I welcome suggestions for healthy, easy prep and tasty meals because I know that there will be days where I will end up in boringtown and it’ll end up as a “fried” rice sorta meal. Definitely going to need to branch out from that one, so let me know. I embrace new recipes!

“burger”

You know those Carl’s Jr. commercials where some hot babe is eating a burger and the juices are dripping all over and she (or he) has to lick their fingers? Well I made a sandwich like that last night. Except my meal wasn’t a typical burger. I made it with a portobello mushroom and man was it divine!

[portobello goodness]

Ingredients:

  • portobello mushroom (stem removed)
  • sandwich thins
  • avocado
  • lettuce
  • tomato
  • fried egg

For the moment, I am sans a grill. So to remedy this, I pan seared the portobello with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. I put the mushroom top side down first and to help flatten it, I put a bowl full of water on top for weight. Not the most conventional way of doing things, but it totally worked! Got me a flat mushroom top to layer with. Toast the sandwich thin and generously apply avo to one side, then the tomato slices, lettuce, mushroom and finally, add a fried egg with an oozing yolky center.

Oh the flavors!!! Simple food with such big taste. And the juices oozing out was one of the best things ever! Hand pat in the back for sure. 

[left: my burger, right: mama’s burger]

I even made my mom one and she thought it was really good. We both agreed that neither of us missed the fact that there wasn’t meat in our dinners. A very satisfying meatless burger. My mom has already requested this dish for future meals to come. I love how open she is to healthier eating habits! Cheers to you mama!

p.s. you may need several napkins for the mess you’re about to make or just use a spoon to scoop up that deliciousness. 

getting back into it…slow and steady

 

It’s been quite some time now since my SD half. I rewarded myself afterwards with burgers daily for 10 days. Damn those burgers were good. I didn’t even care that it hurt my stomach at times. Then slowly, I started to lack motivation to work out. There was the trip to PDX, my sister coming home, Coachella weekend 1 and playing catch up with friends by going out to eat in between. Life’s pretty stellar, right?

Then came the come down from Coachella. That was no bueno. All last week, I was wompy and just ate and ate. I ate regardless of being hungry. It was bad news bears all around. Then I tried to go for a run and after a mile, I was exhausted. This is not like me. What happened? I think I ingested too much MSG in my life. No dice.

Now it’s time to make some changes.

As of yesterday, all the meals I ate were hand made personally by me. I even went for a run around the Silverlake Reservoir. Not once, but TWICE! 9:32min/miles for 40:59. Not too shabby for 4.3 miles.

I’m getting back into it. Slowly but surely, I’ll get back to the lifestyle I love, a lifestyle that makes me happy inside and out. Slow and steady. I’ll get there.

[happy sisters at Coachella]

I want that awesome happy feeling again post my half combined with the giddy happy feeling of watching and listening to wonderful tunes with amazing peeps around me. Time to be a winner.

p.s. Thanks to my fbb and the fam bam for helping to inspire.
turtle photo courtesy: http://bit.ly/In3Ri5

Impressive PDX Eats

To celebrate the half marathons my sister and I accomplished, we decided to visit our friend
Katiee in Portland. Our initial goal was to spend some good quality time playing catch up and exploring a new city. Our end result, we may have fallen in love with all of the wonderful eats that Portland has to offer.

 [Voodoo Donuts – voodoo, captain crunch, bacon maple donuts]

The bacon maple was everything I expected and more. K and I thoroughly enjoyed. Sharing it was just the right amount of salty and sweet that we both craved.

[Pok Pok eats – chilled mustard greens, Muu Paa Kham Wan boar meat, Jasmine rice, papaya salad, Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings plate,  Phat Si Ew, wings bowl, Yam Kai Dao salad]

BEST.LUNCH.EVER! Favorite dish had to be the boars meat that we would wrap in the mustard greens with a bit of sticky rice and their semi spicy looking soy sauce. Nom nom nom!

[Whiskey Soda Lounge – box for sticky rice, a pork dish I can’t recall the name of, Khai Luuke Khoei deep-fried boiled eggs, Huu Muu Thawt, Sup Naw Mai]

The pork was okay, but LOVED the deep fried boiled eggs! The fried pork ears were a bit more chewy than they were crunchy. And the bamboo shoots plate, well it says funky for a reason. Not our fave.

[Screen Door – my plate of fried chicken & waffle, K’s plate of cauliflower/kale/potatoes and poached egg]

My plate was out of control! Do you see the knife through it?! Absolutely delicious! Not photographed is a plate that contained the Fried Oyster Benedict. Mmm…Those fried oysters were divine!

[Salt and Straw – baby scoop of bone marrow w/ smoked cherries and giant scoop of argyle sparking brut sorbet, sea salt ice cream w/ caramel ribbon and pear w/ blue cheese, almond brittle w/ salted ganache and maybe another of sea salt ice cream]

If you can’t tell, the one with the baby scoop and sorbet is my cone. I really wanted to try the bone marrow concoction. And you know what? Pretty tasty. The others thought it was top notch as well. Needless to say, my dairy loving companions also finished their respective scoops and we left feeling quite merry. (I may have taken 2 lactaid pills immediately afterwards. Just in cases.)

PDX, I’m so coming back to eat and imbibe. The weather was definitely worth it. =)

my first Half…

December 31, 2011, I decided to sign up for my first Half Marathon. It was easy to sign up after hearing that both my buddy Chris, and my sister Kristine, signed up for one. Kristine was to do her half in SF with her roommate and I was going to do the SD half with Chris and brother.

Training was inconvenient at times, but I enjoyed the fact that there was a goal to accomplish. Then, I went to SF to cheer on my sister and after seeing her cross the finish line, I was that much more pumped to get mine started.

[Kristine after crossing the Finish line]

But then I hit a speed bump. My orthotics started to bother my right foot after about 7 miles. Then I uttered the words, “I hate running” for the first time ever during my training. I reassessed. I added more yoga and some spin back into my life. I also started a low FODMAPS diet that helped my stomach and my general mood immensely. (More on that on future posts). Then during my last long run, instead of running 12miles, I miscalculated and accidentally ran 13.1miles. I was ready for my half. 

The SD Half was yesterday, March 11, 2012 and my time was 2:09:25. I started at 10:13 min pace and ended with a 9:53 min pace. It was pure joy, exhilaration, excitement, anxiety and shock all rolled into one. I beat my own goal of 2:15:00.

[baby bro and I after the finish]

So much emotion ran through me during my race. And even more so right after. Emerging into Petco Park, with all those people cheering in the stands, is a memory I will never forget. Having such wonderful friends running with me, along with the friends who came down from L.A.  to cheer, was more than I could ask for. I wish I could bottle this feeling and keep it forever. For now, I have the memory and these photos to share with you.

[the brothers and me]

[my sexy cheerleaders]

This may be a repeat thing. I hope my cheerleaders and running mates are okay with that. =)

[SD Half racers! Top: Tracy, Rebecca, Kati, Chris, Sal; Bottom: Me, Rommel]